Drinking beer is a wonderful thing. But it’s really only as good as you are when doing it.
I can hand you an incredible beer that hits all your sweet spots, but if you then take that beer and drink it in a crap mood, alone in a dim room, then you’re doing the beer and yourself a disservice, unless that's your thing...
My point is this: You and your scenario can dramatically affect your experience drinking beer, or anything else for that matter. You and your experience won’t make a terrible beer an exceptional one, but your enjoyment of that beer can sway things a great deal.
I recently grabbed some much needed R&R on a remote island with far away shores. The beer of choice is Kalik, a Bahamian Lager that comes in 5.2% version or 7%. I spent a good amount of time with the 7% model and enjoyed this nectar in its entirety.
So, was this beer an excellent crafted product that captured the finer points of Lager brewing: No. Was it a completely delicious solution to all my beer needs why soothing my head on a beach: Absolutely.
So while thinking about beer and its own merits is important, and a conversation of its own, making sure you’re at the peak of your ability to appreciate it is something else entirely.
A fine Lager with fish cooked perfectly is a nice thing. A fine Lager with fish cooked perfectly, enjoyed with friends at the waters edge with no commitments on the horizon is outstanding.
I read a lot of tasting notes, and have seen folks include things like: what music they were listening to, season, or where they were, but in my opinion, this is an underserved part of the discussion.
While I find it partially interesting that someone I’ve never met with any range of sensory experience or motivations picked up tobacco or roasted notes in a stout, I’d find a lot more interesting if they included that they got fired from their job that day, picked up a pint at a bar they’d never been to while meandering aimlessly on some back roads or shared with an old friend they hadn't seen in ten years.
So, here’s to pairing beer with experience and reviewing ourselves.
Half Acre Beer Co